In an effort to relaunch their brand and image, department store chain JC Penney announced openly gay talk show host and former employee Ellen DeGeneres would take over as their new spokesperson. Apparently there are some people who are less than thrilled with this decision.
One Million Moms, a project of the American Family Association who claims they are “fed up with the filth many segments of society, especially the entertainment media” are providing children, have asked people via their website to call JC Penney to complain of the decision. “Funny that JC Penney thinks hiring an open homosexual spokesperson will help their business when most of their customers are traditional families,” their website states. “JC Penney has made a poor decision and must correct their mistake fast to retain loyal customers and not turn away potential new, conservative shoppers with the company’s new vision.” They also claim more sales will be lost and gained as DeGeneres is not a representative of their customers or “traditional family values.”
In a statement addressing the attack on DeGeneres, GLAAD spokesman Herndon Graddick writes that “selecting an out performer who has inspired and entertained millions, is not only a smart business practice, but a reflection of how LGBT Americans today are an integral and valued part of the fabric of our culture.”
It is worthy to note that DeGeneres has recently been the spokesperson for such companies as American Express and Cover Girl, and earlier this month received the People’s Choice Award for Favorite Daytime TV Host. Last week her daytime talk show averaged 3.38 million viewers. No membership numbers were provided on the One Million Moms website, but did state they were “searching” to reach that number. They may be a little out of their league, no?
Kudos to JC Penney!
For more information on how to take action, please visit http://www.glaad.org/standupforellen to sign a petition showing your support for DeGeneres and JC Penney’s decision.